Carlisle House Bed and Breakfast

Gal and Valentine’s Day: An Accurate History Starting in the 3rd Century

says "Happy Valentine's Day"

Happy February

In Carlisle, we’re all about history. The Downtown of Carlisle is a historic district. Both Galentine’s and Valentine’s Day have a rich history. So why not a single place where you can get a whole history of Galentine’s and Valentine’s Day?

cupid with hearts

When Is Galentine’s Day

Galentine’s Day is typically celebrated annually on February 13th but can be celebrated any day from February 1st to February 13th.

What Is Galentine’s Day

Galentine’s Day is Valentine’s Day but for the girls. Galentine’s Day started on the show Parks and Rec in its second season in 2010. It was explained in the show by saying “What is Galentine’s Day? Oh, it’s only the best day of the year. Every February 13th, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it… ladies celebrating ladies.”

How do you Celebrate Galentine’s Day

  • a festive brunch
    • Galentine’s started as a brunch on Parks and Rec, so it should be continued that way. Grab all your gals, and your pinkest fits, and head to a brunch near you with bottomless mimosas and have the time of your life!
  • gal sleepover
    • make some yummy food, set up the sofa or an air mattress, and invite your girls over. Watch a movie, eat great food, and stay up all night. What could be better? As Barbie says at the beginning of the Barbie movie “Every night is girl’s night.” Don’t want your house to be a mess? We can host your Galentine’s Sleepover here, at the Carlisle House Bed and Breakfast! Book a stay now and we will take care of the room, just grab your gals and head over now!
  • get some goodies for your besties
    • and put a little gift bag together for your girls. Include the color pink (of course, pink is the color of Galentine’s Day) and make a cute bag for your closest girls.
  • throw a Galentine’s party
    • Deck the house out! Make food and drinks, or maybe ask your friends to bring some too. Play music (see Galentine’s playlist below) and have a blast with your best friends.
  • make some Galentine’s cocktails
    • cocktails (or mocktails for those of us choosing to not drink or those of us under the age of 21) is always a great idea. If the cocktail needs a little explaining, add a notecard next to it with the name, or reference to Galentine’s Day!

Galentines Day Playlist

  • Confident – Demi Lovato
    • If you had to ask me what the anthem of Galentine’s Day is, I would point you to this song. Demi Lovato sings about how there is nothing wrong with being confident. This anthem to girlhood is a staple in everyday life, but also Galentine’s Day.
  • Problem – Ariana Grande and Iggy Azalea
    • These girls want you to know that you are the problem, and if you were to be removed… so would a problem. A great collaboration between powerful women in the music industry, this song is great and a very fun listen.

When is Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is celebrated annually on February 13th. Valentine’s Day is celebrated in the United States, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France, and Australia.

What is Valentine’s Day

Because history is rarely simple, Valentine’s Day has many origin stories. In the Catholic church, there are at least three different saints whose names are similar to Valentine or Valentinus.

One storytelling of Valentine says he was a priest in Rome in the third century. Emperor Claudius II banned marriage for young men, claiming that they were better suited for war, Valentine saw this as an injustice and he continued to perform marriages in secret. Claudius learned of Valentine’s marriages, and Claudius ordered Valentine to death.

Some claim it was the Bishop Saint Valentine of Terni whose name is now represented by Valentine’s Day. Terni was beheaded by Claudius outside of Rome.

Another legend says the first Valentine’s greeting was sent by an imprisoned Valentine. He sent it to a girl (possibly his jailor’s daughter) who had visited him during his confinement. He signed this “from your valentine'” which is a phrase we still use today!

Bird's in love

The Pagans have a different story. They celebrated Lupercalia on the ides of February (or February 15th). Lupercalia was a festival dedicated to Fannus, who was the Roman god of agriculture, and the festival was a fertility festival. To begin the Lupercalia festival, members of Luperci (an order of Roman priests) would gather at a sacred cave. This cave was sacred because it was where Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome, had been cared for by a she-wolf. A goat

(for fertility) and a dog (for purification) would be sacrificed by the priests.

Later in the day, all the young women would place their names into a big urn. The bachelors of the city would choose a name and be paired all year long with his chosen women. Often, they would get married.

Lupercalia was outlawed by Christianity as it was deemed “un-Christian” at the end of the 5th Century, and Pope Gelasius declared February 14th. The day was not yet associated with love.

In France and England, it was commonly believed that February 14th was the beginning of bird’s mating season. This added to Valentine’s Day being a romantic holiday.

How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day

  • buy yourself, or your loved one, a stay at Carlisle House Bed and Breakfast
    • breakfast in bed made by someone else? clean bedsheets? away from the kids? What could be better? All of these and more are offered at the Carlisle House Bed and Breakfast. Book your stay now!
  • take dancing lessons together
    • there’s nothing like dancing with someone. They giggle when you get a step wrong or step on their feet. It’s a new way to learn about your partner, have fun, and get out.
  • do a puzzle
  • Go to an ice skating rink (but don’t break your arm)
  • watch the sunrise or sunset Valentine's Day Bingo
  • dance at home
  • take a bike ride
  • play a game
  • go stargazing
    • the stars are out every night, so why not enjoy them a little?
  • Play Valentine’s Day Bingo
    • I’ve added a bingo card next to this. Play, have a little fun, because that’s what it’s all about!

Valentine’s Day Playlist

  • All Of Me – John Legend
    • One of the most lovey love songs ever. John Legend says he will give his all to you if you give your all to him. He says how perfect his love’s imperfections are. A great listen all year round.
  • Lover – Taylor Swift
    • in the song Lover, Taylor Swift plays with the phrase “ladies and gentlemen would you please stand” and adds “with every guitar string scar on my hand… I take this magnetic force of a man to be my lover.” A wonderful song about two people falling in love, and a recommendation for every day!
  • Body Like a Back Road – Sam Hunt
    • Because I love a little country, I have included this song on the playlist. Sam Hunt describes his feelings as he meets his future girl, saying that he about fell out of his chair when he first saw her. He continues to say that he will go as slowly (taking 6 whole weeks to get her number!) as she wants. This song is upbeat, funny, and loving all at the same time.

Thank You!

As always, thank you so much for reading. I hope you have the best Galentines and Valentine’s Day and can’t wait for the next blog coming soon.

Chloe Moore